Cheshire East Council is launching a new streamlined application process today, supporting businesses to introduce al fresco dining facilities.
The new online application process for pavement licenses supports the council’s overall approach in supporting our high streets, town centres and the hospitality sector as part of the economic recovery plan arising from the pandemic.
The application process is straightforward and subject to a fee of £100.
The new policy will help prospective applicants, who should familiarise themselves with the specified details before applying. Guidance sets out probable areas where licences will be permitted, the process to be followed and the relevant conditions.
All businesses with outdoor seating on the public highway require a licence. The council is encouraging any business already providing or seeking to provide al fresco dining facilities on public highways to submit at application for a pavement licence. Businesses also need to check that they have adequate public liability insurance to cover the area in question, as failure to have a licence may affect their insurance.
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said:
These streamlined provisions will temporarily allow many bars, pubs, cafes and restaurants to apply for licences, to accommodate outdoor dining on public highways. This fast-tracked route is ideal compared to the lengthier, more expensive standard regulatory processes.
“The new measures will support a safe al fresco dining experience on our pavements whilst maintaining adequate space for pedestrians. It is essential to follow current government guidance and signage in your local town, being conscious of public safety to help keep us all safe.”
Councillor Nick Mannion, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for environment and regeneration, said:
These temporary measures are supporting businesses to reopen their doors. Economically, this will help licenced premises to survive and rebuild income after the pandemic lockdown.
“Businesses and their customers do however need to be mindful, to respect other pedestrians using the pavements during this time. I would encourage all businesses looking to use outdoor seating areas to make sure they apply. The process is relatively straightforward and inexpensive.”